SAN GABRIEL — Every match the Holy Family High girls' soccer team has played this season has come with a handicap, as the Gaels' roster consists of just 10 players — one short of a full team.
On Wednesday, the team's numbers were whittled down even further to nine due to a missing player and, with opponent San Gabriel Mission fielding a full 11 with bench players to spare, the deck was stacked even more heavily against Holy Family.
The Gaels never got a shot attempt off in a 10-0 Horizon League loss that saw the host Pioneers continue to attack the goal with full force right up until the final whistle.
"They had 11 and we only had nine out there, so we're doing pretty good," said Gaels Coach Gerardo Gonzalez, whose team fell to 0-4 on the season and in league. "This team [has a lot of] beginners, but they're catching up. Wait 'til next year."
Mission, which finished with a 39-0 shot advantage, took control early with two goals one minute apart by Celina Harvin inside the first four minutes.
Eight minutes into the match, Mission's Nancy Mattazaro tracked down a loose ball on the right side of the Gaels' backfield and punched it into an empty net, as goalkeeper Tara Sims was late getting back into position after making a sliding play on the far side of the box moments earlier.
From there, Sims recovered nicely, though, making saves on Mission's next eight shots on goal to keep Holy Family in the game until the final 10 minutes of the first half when the Pioneers tacked on two more goals by Mattazaro and Steph Chavez.
Sims finished with nine saves, all in the first half, before Jackie Varela took over in goal for the second half and made six saves of her own.
Mission (2-7-1, 1-2-1 in league) closed the game out with goals from Karla Vasquez (two), Jazlyn Aldana, Chavez and Paola Correa.
"They played a lot better the second half," Gonzalez said. "At least we got the ball on [the Pioneers'] side."